2007-01-25Acoustic guitarist Eric Bibb travels the road where the blues and folk .music intersect. Like Chris Smither and Keb’ Mo’, he uses his guitar as fuel for his lyrics rather than simply shoe horning some words around a riff. With everything from thoughtful tales about the redemptive power of faith, So Glad, to the reflective title track which laments the feast or famine nature of life, to the sly sexual come on of Storybook Hero and even a cover of Bob Dylan’s Buckets of Rain, Bibb crafts tales that escape the routine subjects that are the fodder of all too many blues discs. While the lyrics play a central role to these songs thinking there isn’t much going on musically would be a mistake. Bibb has a number of tricks up his sleeve to keep things just as interesting musically as lyrically. The lead off track, Tall Cotton, features Congolese Guitarist Kahanga “Master Vumbi” Dekula whose rhythmic style brings a taste of Africa to the proceedings. Elsewhere, Bibb employs a tuba to propel the bottom end of his call out to not only his blues heroes, Still Livin’ On, but to his favorite shoe shine man as well, Shine. The live track, In My Father’s House, utilizes Janne Peterssson’s skills on Wurlitzer to instill an urgency to it that would fit nicely on an early Doors disc. Coffee House blues at its best. Smitty
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